I like order. My life is in order, my home is in order, you know that my fabric is in order. Maybe it's a control thing, who knows, but it makes me happy. The unexpected throws me, always has and the same can me said for my craft. Whatever craft I'm doing, whether it's sewing, felting, embroidery etc, it always turns out neat and will look exactly how I intended it to look... Sooooometimes, I secretly crave freedom. At times I picture myself with a blank canvas, a paintbrush and paint and allow myself to go wild knowing that the outcome, whether it's good or bad, will make me feel great! In reality I know that I would find that so difficult to deal with ... or would I?
A few years ago when we were living in Brighton on the South Coast of England, I went to a days collage workshop. We each had to stand up and say what we wanted to get out of the day. I remember standing when it was my turn and saying that I wanted to free up. I wanted to create a collage that wasn't symmetrical or neat and tidy, or predictable. You know what? I came away with a collage of a bird and each piece was cut and applied perfectly! Darn it! I have a friend who's a counselor and I can see her now nodding her head thoughtfully with eyebrows raised and knowing exactly what I'm about!
All this is leading to something, so stay with me. It's just a little something to most I imagine, but a huge something to me. On Friday, as usual it was our Girl Friday Craft Day. One member was away in Australia so that just left Victoria and myself. I asked if we could have a play around with fabric and plaster and that's exactly what we did. Now, the thing with casting plaster is that you never know how it's going to turn out!! I went along with plaster images in my head of exactly how I wanted my casts to turn out. Did it happen that way? Err...nope! For several hours we tried out different techniques but I couldn't produce what was in my head. At times the plaster was too thick so created air pockets. At other times it was too runny and seeped through the fabric. It was getting towards the end of the afternoon and I was beginning to feel like a complete failure. I decided to give it one more go and.....hold your breath here.....nope, still not what I was expecting until Victoria said, 'Hey, take this pencil and do this...and take this paint brush and do that...and... she taught me to add to what I'd created in the hope that the final outcome was acceptable to me. And do you know what? It was! It wasn't perfection, plaster had still seeped through the fabric but I learnt that actually, that was ok. I had the odd air pocket but again, that was ok too. What I'd produced, I was pleased with, thrilled even, because it wasn't perfect. Victoria said that perhaps that's the difference between craft and art. Hmmm, I'll think on that one but she might be right. Wanna see?
So now, I'm excited about experimenting with plaster and the washing line range I that's what I'm calling it) and I'm not scared about getting it wrong, because actually, that really doesn't matter!
I took some photos around Victoria's garden whilst waiting for the plaster to dry. She still won't let me in the house (we work in her studio that's away from the house) but I'm hoping that someday she will. We're very different in some ways Victoria and I. She tells me that she'd like to be like me when it comes to housekeeping and I'd like to be a little more like her, especially when it comes to bravery and experimenting with art. She has weeds in her garden, her outdoor furniture needs attention, her fence needs rubbing down and painting, but maybe one day, she'll realize that that's exactly why I think she's so FABULOUS!
I spent a few hours with another friend this week. She'd just got back from a big trip and looking at her photos she showed me Europe through her eyes. It's the end of Winter but we sat on the deck drinking flat whites and marveling at the view. Wouldn't you just love a view like this? See the snow on top of the mountains?
Did you see the message about comments at the top of the blog? I've been umming and ahhing about this for sometime now. If people take the time and make the effort to leave a comment then more often than not I've acknowledged it with a email, it's polite, I'm English and politness goes a long way! Over the past few weeks things have got so busy around here that I haven't had time to email everyone and that makes me feel bad and then I worry and then...I'm sure you get the idea. So I decided that unless your comment is a question (and I'll try to answer those) then please know that each and every comment that's left is received with bucketfuls of thanks and appreciation even though I can't always thank you individually. Hope you understand.
Until next time guys...